- Gaiam Blog - http://blog.gaiam.com -

Searching for Bliss

Posted By Kim Fuller On March 18, 2010 @ 5:10 pm In Inspirational Media, Personal Growth, Relationships | 8 Comments

Footprints in Sand © Kim Fuller [1]

© Kim Fuller

I was first introduced to Joseph Campbell in a 10th grade English class. Although his ideas sparked my interest, The Hero’s Journey [2] and The Power of Myth [3] were never more to me than philosophical curriculum. Now, however, I appreciate Campbell’s teachings [4], and those who teach him, more than ever. It seems that now, “Follow your bliss”— his famous words of wisdom — are a part of me every day.


Almost five years ago, on a Saturday morning in early June, I was sitting on a stiff, foldout chair between two of my best friends and among about three dozen of my closest peers. We were all wearing long black gowns with gold sashes, along with traditional square-topped caps adorned with black and gold tassels hanging down and frequently grazing our right cheekbones.

I remember my high school graduation very well. Probably because it wasn’t very long ago, but also because, like the bildungsroman novels [5] that we read and deconstructed in our AP English class, this day truly felt “coming-of-age.”

For me, it wasn’t the ceremony, or even the nostalgia, that made this a defining moment in my life (although those elements did contribute). It was the speech. The words that were shared from my English teacher, mentor, coach and friend, that made the moment one that I will never forget.

Mr. Schuessler’s words were more powerful than I could hope to translate, so I will share a few of them here:

“… I want to stress to you right away that there is no greater possibility in store for you than finding your bliss. Doing what you love to do and being with people you love on a daily basis is as good as it gets.

No one can ever tell you what your bliss is, and sometimes it takes a good deal of time to uncover it for yourself, but if you’ve found it — or once you’ve found it — the passion that you’ll have for it will be unmistakable.

… The beauty of this day is that you are about to have the opportunity to be in complete control of your life from here forward — if you’ll agree to take responsibility for it …”

As I sat looking out at my family and friends — the small mountain community that had supported me for 18 years — I was overcome with the happiness [6], sadness, inspiration and nervousness that comes with taking that next step in life.

“… The opportunity to do the positive thing, to do the beautiful thing — to blow people away with beauty — is always there.

… Though this is a difficult time for me right now, filled as I am with grief and praise, there’s no where I’d rather be at this moment than right here talking with you.

This is my bliss.

The center of my universe, my perfect world.

Now, go make yours.”

The once-dry tassel swinging next to my face was now damp as it swept away the tears that were now sliding down my cheek.


The years between now and then have shown me what it’s like to make progress in finding my own bliss, as well as the missteps that have pushed me off, and then back on, my path.

Now, as a recent college graduate from the University of Colorado in Boulder, I am introducing myself to this blog as a life-enthusiast and young journalist. I am 23, and I almost feel as new and wide-eyed as I did when I was a college freshman, although I know this is not true.

I am striving to live a healthy and active life [7], while pursuing my career and deepening my relationships. Every day it takes different energy to find balance, and every day I have different goals to help me achieve this balance.

Some days I want to travel the world with all my senses — write and read, eat and smell, listen and question. Other days, I just want to make it to yoga [8] or go on a run. Today, I may find balance with the company of someone I love or a good book and a glass of red wine [9]. I see every day as a chance to start fresh — a new chance for finding bliss.

I think of Mr. Schuessler’s words often:

“This is my bliss.

The center of my universe, my perfect world.

Now, go make yours.”

Article printed from Gaiam Blog: http://blog.gaiam.com

URL to article: http://blog.gaiam.com/searching-for-bliss/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://fullerkim.wordpress.com/

[2] The Hero’s Journey: http://www.jcf.org/new/index.php?categoryid=83&p9999_action=details&p9999_wid=272

[3] The Power of Myth: http://www.jcf.org/new/index.php?categoryid=83&p9999_action=details&p9999_wid=237

[4] Campbell’s teachings: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/The-Return-of-Joseph-Campbell.html

[5] bildungsroman novels: http://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=119

[6] happiness: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/The-Fifth-Agreement.html

[7] healthy and active life: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/7-Secrets-to-Living-a-Long-Happy-Life.html

[8] yoga: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/Yoga-Answers-and-Solutions-Goto-Guide.html

[9] red wine: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/Drink-Wine-Live-Longer.html

Copyright © 2007 Gaiam Community Blog. All rights reserved.